District Leader - Larger AreaWhen you show interest in being an Avon Representative, it's the district leader who makes the first contact with you. She (or he) coordinates a large multi-town area and keeps track of all the unit leaders in that area. In my case, I put in my online query and it said I'd hear back the next day. I asked to be contacted in the evenings only. Several days later she called in the *morning*. She was told I wasn't available. So she called back a few days after that - again in the morning. She was rather short on the phone and gave me the information for my meeting with my local rep. She wasn't interested in talking or providing information - just on getting me into the hands of that rep.
Just over two weeks later, here is the first email I received from this district leader. For privacy reasons I won't reveal her name. At issue is the tone of the message.
Just a few reminders, Our c-15 ordes are due this Wed 7-13-07 by noon. Please note as a rep and Business Partner with Avon it is your responsiblity to place a order every campaign. This will insure that your customers receive their orders on time and in our 2 week cycle. This will also increase your sales and profits. Plus you will have the supplies you need for upcoming campaigns like Brochures and Samples to supply our customers with each and every campaign. We have been in Business for 121 yrs for our customer service and we will stay in business in the future for the same reason.
We will be montoring all accounts starting this campaign who does not place an order. You will be contacted by e-mail or phone about the status of the removal of your Avon acct. I must say our District does not have many accts that will be affected with this matter and I praise you for being great at your business. However the few we do have need to place a order every campaign and I assure you your business will boom.
The message went on from there with other warnings - they wouldn't let you put in a payment late, they wouldn't get you extra brochures, etc. etc. All in all I found the message to be exceedingly draconian and negative. I have worked with many online companies and they promote a positive, encouraging atmosphere. This was more of a "shape up or you're out on the street, you slackers!" Any praise in the message was after-the-fact and faint.
Plus, their contract clearly does NOT require an order in every cycle. For them to imply that you MUST do this or be kicked out is morally wrong, in my point of view.
I have to say - while the unit leader's interactions were great, and while the online system and training were great, my interactions with this district manager was the sole reason I began to think twice about being a part of the Avon organization. I did not want to be supporting this style of management and directly, financially encouraging her to continue in this vein.
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